Being more present and learning how to be engaged with each and every task.
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Being More Present in Your Own Life

Workplace
Author since:
October, 2015
101 blog posts

Being more present is hard. Most of us are not always fully engaged in what’s happening in our daily life. We are constantly in our heads anticipating how something will turn out, or thinking about how things didn’t happen the exact way we wanted.

The result is that we live with high levels of stress, tension, frustration and anxiety every day. Not only does it take away the joy in our everyday life, living in this distracted manner decreases our productivity and performance.

The Mind Hack: Be Present

In his TEDx talk, Matt Killingsworth, a Harvard psychologist who ran a study that gathered 650,000 data points from 15,000 people across 80 countries, discovered this:

“We are substantially happier when we are fully engaged (being present) in what we are doing.”

We are less happy when our mind is distracted regardless of what we are doing. For example, commuting to work is something that most of us do not enjoy. Matt’s research showed that people who focused on their commute instead of letting their mind wander off were substantially happier. This pattern held true for every single activity that was measured.

In addition to higher happiness levels, you enter a state of flow when you are fully engaged and present in an activity. This is a state of being where you are able to tap into your highest abilities, where you are at the optimum level of clarity and focus, and where your performance level is at its peak. Research by the Flow Genome Project found that being in “flow” can boost human productivity, learning, and skill mastery by 490%. It’s the state that elite athletes are in when achieving superhuman feats, and it’s not exclusive to them.

However, we are a distracted breed. Matt’s research shows that we are only present 35 – 50% of the time in our daily life.

So How Do We Be More Present?

This is not about ignoring the past or the future. Our capacity to learn from the past and plan for the future is immensely useful. Just that when you are doing them, do them with your full attention. That’s being present and inflow.
There is no magic formula or a single method that works. Just like learning anything new, start with small steps and keep practising. Here are some simple ways you can start with.

 

1) Start Your Day With Some Quiet Time

After scrambling to get the kids off to school and driving through rush hour traffic, most of us come into work already stressed and on the edge. In this frazzled state of mind, you are more likely to be stressed out by things at work.
Start your day with 5 minutes of quiet time, have a cup of tea, a nice shower, or focus on your breath. You may find that the stresses of the day roll off your back easier.

2) Focus On One Task

How often do you switch from your inbox to a conversation with your colleague? Or from reading an article to checking messages on WhatsApp. Our attention is being demanded by so many things that we have constantly pumped up on cortisol. Our distracted mind feels overwhelmed because it’s constantly shifting from one thing to another.

Try this instead. Switch off all distractions and set a timer for 20 minutes. Pick a task on your to-do list and fully engage in it. Besides lower stress levels, you’ll get more done than when you were multitasking.

3) Practice While You Wait

Embrace the daily pockets of waiting time as opportunities to practice being present. When waiting for the lift or in line for your coffee, instead of looking at your phone, practice being fully present. Observe what is happening in that moment without any judgment or commentary about how the cue is slower today because the lady at the counter doesn’t know what she wants. Just notice what you see, hear, or smell.

4) Be Intentional

Our intentions drive our focus. An effective way to build a habit of presence is to intentionally practice for a month.

There are bundles of blogs, advice and books out there that help to teach us to be present but the real trick is to start practising just one tip and build from there.  See if this focus makes a difference, make it a habit and pick another one… enjoy being 400% more successful!

 

Workplace is a 5-star coworking and serviced office company in Manchester. It is perfectly positioned on Oxford Street, close to Oxford Road Station and only 10 minutes walk from Piccadilly Station.  It has easy access with the tram system in Manchester being only a few steps from  Albert Square.  Full Google Directions and Location

Workplace Manchester offers excellent flexibility with day desk hire, coworking, reserved desks, offices and meeting space.

 

 

 

Up Next

Starting a New Business with Vulnerability and Shame

Workplace
Author since:
October, 2015
101 blog posts

Starting a new business was and is  Scary and we do mean the capital S! Although we are hugely proud of what we have created at Workplace.  We also know we have a great product, working team and ethic, some days, especially at the beginning we feel paralysed with fear at the enormity of what we are doing.

Having always being employees before Workplace, this fear of starting a new business was quite new to us.

We started to look at what it was that was causing this fear so that we could understand it and start using our fear in a positive way. This led us to TED and to two talks by Brene Brown about shame and vulnerability – WOW.  She also has a great Netflix presentation that is well worth a watch.

In the past, we have worked on a number of projects starting a new business and mostly very successfully, which is a great feeling. The elation of success is the best while feeling a failure is the worst. We have been there and it wasn’t a great feeling!

Learn by mistakes

People tell you that you learn by these mistakes and you need them to be truly successful, but failure stinks and most people would honestly prefer to avoid that at any costs.

To do that however we need to live in a sealed box, not communicate, try to do anything with my life and especially not start a new business, that would be crazy!

If you are the same and can’t understand what it was that you are so scared of, listen to Brene it will all slot in to place.

It’s the shame that comes with failure or possible failure, the loss of pride and self-esteem, the inner feeling of all the things that you should and should not have done and the stories that we tell ourselves over and over again just to reaffirm how totally stupid we were and are.

So what to do about all these feelings and life reaffirming negative tales we re-run in our heads. Well according to our new BF, Brene Brown, you can’t experience happiness, success, elation without also opening up to fear, shame and vulnerability.

Wholehearted living

These are essential to wholehearted living. Wholehearted living is going at life and whatever you do with all of your heart. Brene tells about how in her research she found that the people who felt loved and engaged also felt they were worthy of this love, she talks about how shame and guilt are very different and about the need for shame and vulnerability.

So the lessons to learn are that we are okay to feel fear, shame and vulnerability and that we should open up to this and not take the option to hide under our duvet for the rest of our lives. This fear, shame and vulnerability are all part of courage, courage is about the heart and your wholehearted living.

Be worthy.  Be worthy of your shame, your vulnerability and your fear but you are also worthy of happiness because we have the courage and bravery to take this opportunity, run with it, change it, make it happen.

We are creating something at Workplace that has not been done before which is the meaning of creation. There is nothing that makes you more vulnerable than creating something new.

Our timing is now, we can’t keep putting it off waiting for when starting a new business might be more perfect, more settled, less fearful, less vulnerable. We have to charge at vulnerability and go for it.

So it turns out that vulnerability is the birthplace of innovation, creativity and change. From being paralysed with fear  we are now shouting at vulnerability: ‘Bring it on!’

This is why we started a new business: to support people who feel exactly the same way as we do, who have the courage to go it alone, stand out and make it happen. We will be in this together.

Feel inspired

Watch Brene Brown’s TED Talks for inspiration: https://www.ted.com/speakers/brene_brown

The Power of Vulnerability

Listening to Shame

Vulnerability and shame. Vulnerability and shame are ok! ( especially when you are starting a new business)

 

Workplace is a 5-star coworking and serviced office company in Manchester. It is perfectly positioned on Oxford Street, close to Oxford Road Station and only 10 minutes walk from Piccadilly Station.  It has easy access with the tram system in Manchester being only a few steps from  Albert Square.  Full Google Directions and Location

Workplace Manchester offers excellent flexibility with day desk hire, coworking, reserved desks, offices and meeting space.

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